Irene Bennett Reid, a retired city Department of Social Services employee and mother of former Baltimore Mayor Kurt Schmoke, succumbed to lung cancer and died at Sinai Hospital on Jan. 11. She was 78.

Reared in the south, Reid worked much of her life as a city social worker, aiming to improve the lives of children and their families throughout the city. After having Schmoke through a previous marriage, she married Frank Madison Reid Jr., a bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church. The two later did missionary work in various countries across the globe.

Baltimore City Councilwoman Mary Pat Clarke described Reid in a statement as, “A strong and gracious leader whose passing is a great loss to the very life and fabric of our city.”

She is survived by her son, Kurt Schmoke, dean of Howard University School of Law, her stepson, the Rev. Frank M. Reid, pastor of Bethel AME Church in Baltimore, and a host of other family members and friends.

Funeral arrangements for Reid will commence with a wake from 5-8 p.m. on January 14 at Bethel AME Church, 1300 Druid Hill Ave., Baltimore.. A viewing service will be held at the same location on Jan. 15 at 9:30-10:30 a.m., followed by the funeral service at 11 a.m.